Ode to the Food Chain

Who looks the gift horse in the mouth
and sets a place for Ernie Kovacs?
What gives the sausage, pink from boiling,
its prom night high gloss tone
as fluorescents carom their alien spectra
from that inner skin of vibrant plumbing?

Food chain,
rest stop on infinity’s interstate,
perpetual motion gizmo divine.
Transmigration of proteins, a swan made of chopped liver
of how many undone fowl.
Never to fly in this life or branch of genetic engineering.
Catering to a palate gross or net, revealing
not only eater and eaten, but invoking in tiny
bicarbonate bubbles the hunter that is
the hunted. The foreskin
on the cutting room floor.

–after John Updike

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